- Generally speaking the area to the south of South Dock is what we all refer to as the Isle of Dogs but, in fact, there is no such part of London and the area is actually the areas of Cubitt Town and Millwall. The area was last formally referred to as the as the Isle of Dogs between 1986 and 1992.
- The Isle of Dogs was first mentioned in Henry III’s papers and it is thought that Edward III kept greyhounds here, hence the name.
- However, prior to 1800 it is just as likely that the Isle of Dogs would have been referred to as Stepney Marsh
- The Isle of Dogs is sometimes simply referred to as The Island. However, we can confirm that the Isle of Dogs is not the location for Channel 4’s The Island with Bear Grylls. (That was Isla Gibraleón in the Pacific Ocean)
- The name ‘Mudchute’, (Mudchute Park & Farm and a DLR station), derives from the period when Millwall Dock was being constructed in the 1860s. Spoil from the excavation of the Dock, and silt from its channels and waterways were dumped there using a conveyor system – The Mudchute
- Millwall Football Club are not based on the Isle of Dogs but they were until 1910, at Millwall Park, hence the name. Millwall FC now play at The Den in Bermondsey.
- In 1710 there were 4 pubs on the Isle of Dogs. When the Docks were at their busiest (and we assume the workers at their thirstiest) in the late 19th century there were 37 pubs. Today there are 11.
- Island Gardens park opened in 1895, but it is thought that Canaletto’s painting Greenwich Hospital from the North Bank of the Thames (1750) was painted from this location.
- Island Gardens is also home to the northern entrance to the Greenwich Foot Tunnel. Construction of the tunnel finished in 1902, and it was built to replace the ferry service linking the Docks with Greenwich.
- Regular cleaning has made the docks water more attractive to various species of freshwater and saltwater fish including flounder, plaice, bream and rudd. The docks are regularly used by aquatic birds and a seal has even been spotted in the North Dock on several occasions (and I’ve actually seen him in the Thames too).
Isle of Dogs Facts
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